We all live such busy lives today, whether that’s as a working parent or a stay-at-home parent – life has a way of just feeling hectic, where there are rarely enough hours in the day to get the things done you really want to get done. In this sense, life can feel somewhat like a never-ending cycle of doing chores, tending to children, being a good partner, a good mother, a good daughter, and a good Christian – often leaving us feeling like we’re on a treadmill without any rest.
Can you remember the feeling of going on a ‘date’, or having a romantic weekend getaway with your partner? For many people, this is a distant memory, as their lives are taken over by tending to the needs of their children, and whilst we’re all happy to make sacrifices for our children it’s important we make time for our relationship, and ourselves, as otherwise we’ll end up feeling exhausted which limits how good a parent we can be.
If you think about it, even on a flight, the pilot always reminds us to tend to our own oxygen mask before helping others and in this sense it’s vitally important you tend to your own needs as well as your children’s, because a worn out mother is a grumpy mother that often ends up with a much shorter fuse than she would like – so give yourself permission to take some time out for yourself.
We all have a bucket list of experiences we would like to encounter in our lives, and when children come along, our personal bucket list tends to get put on the backburner – for instance, perhaps you’ve always wanted to visit the Coquelicot Estate Wines & Tasting Room to indulge in some good food and fine wine, yet this has somehow been replaced by tucking into a Happy Meal beside Ronald McDonald!
A lot of people feel guilty when considering the idea of taking a break without their kids, but presuming they are being well looked after whilst you’re away there’s very little to feel guilty about. The need to recharge and the benefit to your children outweighs any potential guilt, as they will appreciate a more recharged and replenished parent that has more energy and enthusiasm to play.
Furthermore, it’s a good strategy to ensure your children don’t develop attachment issues down the line, as it’s healthy to not be together all the time, and if your child does develop an attachment issue such as attachment anxiety, then it’s important to nip this in the bud in the early years as otherwise, it has potential to become a significant problem in adulthood.
This is particularly pertinent when considering homeschooling, as you want to ensure your child has a variety of social experiences and doesn’t become emotionally reliant on you as their source of ‘everything’.
In summary, you need to give yourself permission to take a break without the kids and see it as a positive act of self-care, rather than a negligent or selfish action… you will come back a better parent, it will give you and your partner time to connect and rekindle the magic that’s between you which will strengthen your bond, and it’s emotionally healthy for your children to be without you for a few days.